Just as there are platform wars, browser wars, and programming language wars, there are text manipulation tool wars. We've seen another skirmish here. My first "word processing" experience was in 1975, using WordStar on an Apple II with a CP/M card. There are times I still long for its html-like tags. Once you absorbed the mnemonics and learned the keyboard commands (mice were still a dream in the minds of the Xerox PARC engineers), you could do a respectable job of producing a simply formatted document. Even then, I had a touch-typist friend who didn't understand the difference between "O" and "0" or "l" and "1", who always wanted to "help" the program by adding spaces and hard line returns, and who never really did assimilate the keyboard commands.
This was thirty years ago and things really haven't changed that much. We still have folks who can comprehend and embrace a particular technology, in this case, word processors, and those for whom the metaphor the product employs is incomprehensible. I have used line editors on large mainframes, various Notepad/Wordpad clones, MS Word since version 4, WordStar, WordPerfect, Abiword, OpenOffice, LibreOffice, vi, emacs, Tex/LaTeX, and several more whose names escape me, to munge words for presentation on paper, green-screen CRT, and HD-LCD flat-panel. Sometimes the tools help me get the job done and sometimes the just get in the way. When the latter happens, I find another tool for that task, but I don't discard it entirely. Humans are tool-using, tool-building creatures and is to quote Humpty Dumpty, 'The question is which is to be master that's all.'
These ten tips are just some simple ideas about how someone who MUST work with MS Word can do so a bit more effectively. There is no doubt or debate that other letter-crunchers are more suitable for some tasks than MS Word. And it is equally clear that MS Word is definitely the 800-lb gorilla in the corporate living room, at least in the U.S. As one crusty Scots manager I worked for would say, "It is what it is. Deal with it." If creative, technical writing is your job description or just one part of it, learning how to use the tools of your trade, whatever they may be, is a simple, basic part of being a valuable, effective employee. And these days, more than ever before since WW-II, it's vital to know your tools and stay fluent in their use.
Edit: corrected typo.
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